Comment on proposed service cuts TODAY, 6 pm

February 9th, 2010

SFMTAConcerned about proposed service cuts? Do you agree with us that extended meter hours (including enforcing meters on Sundays) are far better than cutting mass transit, and that charging extra for the F line and expresses is a terrible idea? If so, please attend and comment at this SFMTA public meeting:

Town Hall Meeting, One South Van Ness Ave. @ Market St., 2nd Floor Atrium
Tuesday, Feb. 9 – 6 to 8 p.m.
Transit: 6, 71, 47, 49, Metro to Van Ness

Update: We live tweeted the meeting at our Twitter. Follow it!

Rescue Muni opposes $5 F-Market fare, supports parking meter increases

January 19th, 2010

Rescue Muni unequivocally opposes the proposed $5 fare for the F-Market historic streetcar line.  We recognize that this is an extraordinarily difficult budget year, and that despite the recent fare increase, Muni is running short on money from other sources.  But the F-Market is one of the most cost-effective lines in the city, and other, better revenue options exist, not least of which are extending parking meter hours into Sundays and evenings.  We are unconvinced that these measures will hurt San Francisco’s economy.  Many cities—including cities with fewer transit options than San Francisco—keep their parking meters running on Sundays and weekends, and seem to suffer no ill effects from it.

Singling out a single line for a fare increase—and eliminating 313,000 service hours per year—shouldn’t even be considered in a “Transit First” city until all other options are exhausted.  They haven’t been.

We urge Rescue Muni members to attend today’s meeting of the MTA Board—2:00 p.m. at Room 400, City Hall—and let directors know that this plan is unacceptable, and that better options for closing the short-term revenue gap remain.

Update: Rick Laubscher of Market Street Railway has a very thoughtful letter in opposition to the $5 F-line.

Also: The Bike Coalition has a handy form to tell the Supervisors and the Mayor that you oppose higher fares and service cuts.

MTA: 1 in 10 Muni riders are freeloaders

October 19th, 2009

Old cable car transferIn what will surprise nobody at all, the MTA has found in a recent study that “nearly 10 percent” of Muni riders don’t pay. With a 10% fare evasion rate, the potential annual revenue from stricter enforcement could be as much as $17 million per year – not enough to do away with the annual deficit, but enough to prevent more service cuts. (We are strong supporters of stricter fare enforcement, along with extending parking meter hours, which will also help prevent service cuts.) SFist is also discussing this today.

Update: Supervisor Dufty has scheduled a hearing on fare evasion as well as crime on Muni.

Update 10/22: The Examiner has an editorial on the subject.

Fed’s funding boosts fare gate upgrade project

August 19th, 2009

translinkThe SFMTA’s project to upgrade Metro fare gates has received an $11 million boost from the Fed’s stimulus package. The $29 million project to replace fare gates with cashless Translink-only gates will be moved up 1 and a half years for completion in the fall of 2010.

Passengers will still be able to buy single rides by using fare machines similar to what BART uses and accept cash, debit, or credit to pay for a fare. Fast Passes will be accepted until they are phased out in favor of electronic monthly passes on Translink.

Dufty: Raise fare evasion fines to $500 max

May 18th, 2009

Adult Fast PassAs part of the continuing budget debate about the MTA, Supervisor Dufty is urging Muni to raise fines for fare evasion to $75 from the current $50, and more importantly raise fines for repeat offenses to $500 for a third offense.

Although this won’t close the budget gap on its own, this is a much needed proposal. Fare evasion is a serious problem on Muni, particularly on many bus lines where riders board via the back door with impunity. With fares going up to $2 soon, fare paying riders deserve to know that everyone is paying his or her fair share. If this is done, MTA needs to post signs reminding riders of the $500 maximum fine – as is done for red light photo enforcement and carpool lanes.

Perhaps littering on the bus should also have a $500 maximum fine?